Es·say v. t. [imp. & p. p. Essayed p. pr. & vb. n. Essaying.]
1. To exert one's power or faculties upon; to make an effort to perform; to attempt; to endeavor; to make experiment or trial of; to try.
What marvel if I thus essay to sing? --Byron.
Essaying nothing she can not perform. --Emerson.
A danger lest the young enthusiast . . . should essay the impossible. --J. C. Shairp.
2. To test the value and purity of (metals); to assay. See Assay. [Obs.]